So I am far from new to the single-serve instant brewer systems out there. I started with the Keurig (before the 2.0 DRM stupidity) and use it occasionally for brewing large cups of coffee when entertaining guests. I then supplemented my Keurig K65 with a Tassimo T65 to make quick and easy lattes and cappuccinos with the supplied real milk tdsics. Real milk was the thing there.
Recently Tassimo moved to a new way of making cappuccinos and lattes. They are using condensed milk and powered milk in almost every case now and the beverage quality has suffered a lot. This led me looking to alternatives. The next big brand of singe-serve brewers is the Nespresso line.
Nespresso has always been on the periphery of my radar. The problem has always been the expensive cost of entry in to the Nespresso ecosystem. Their cheapest brewers still today are in the $200 to $250 CAD range for the cheapest brewers. The espresso cups themselves are relatively competitive in price.
Recently Amazon Canada had a sale on their Inissia brewer for $99 CAD and $149 CAD for the brewer and an automatic milk frother. I picked up the brewer without the frother and a few days later I have a new Nespresso Inissia delivered to my doorstep.
A smart thing that Nespresso does is include a sample of all the different espresso’s they offer (at least from their regular lineup) and each one has a description of their strength and flavour. Really handy.
The Inissia, made by De’Longhi, itself is a pretty simple brewer and is available in three different colours. I chose the grey/silver version. You can tell, even for a “value” machine it’s very well built though I wish the reservoir lid was a little less flimsy. It’s a very simple device to setup. They tell you to run a few reservoirs worth of water through it before you actually brew anything to make sure the brewer is cleaned out before you use it. This doesn’t take long as it brews about as quick as my Keurig K65 does.
One thing to note here is that the Inissia and most of the other brewers are designed to brew espressos. This means you aren’t going to get a real large sized cup of coffee. If you are looking for a coffee maker that can do large cups of coffee you should look at a Tassimo or Keurig brewer. The brew size of the Inissia doesn’t bother me as I prefer to make lattes out of my espressos.
The system is rather simple. The brewer is turned on by pressing one of the cup sizes on the top of the brewer itself. You then lift the handle at the front (similar to a Keurig) and a cavity opens up top and you drop in your chosen small metallic Nespresso capsule. You then close the lever and press the desired brew size button up top. I usually by default use the larger brew size though it should be noted that every capsule is formulated to either us the small or large size. Brewing is, as I said, about as quick as my Keurig K65 and soon you have a cup of espresso. At this point you can add frothed milk for a latte (or just milk or whatever you want that meets your style).
When you are done lift the handle again and the used capsule drops in to a waste bin under the brewing head. I never realized what I was missing until I had this feature. This is something that, due to their design, you will never see on Tassimo or Keurig devices. The drip tray also flips up to allow larger cups to be brewed into which I do like. I don’t have any small espresso sized cups. The drip tray and spent capsule bin pull out as one from the machine to easily be emptied and cleaned.
The espresso brewed is like nothing I have ever had. It’s incredibly what this little machine is capable of. The brew is perfect every time. There was only one Nespresso espresso capsule that I didn’t like as much but that’s no fault to the machine. As I mentioned earlier these machines are not for brewing full cups of coffee. That work still rests with my Tassimo or Keurig depending on my preference at the time.
The capsules can be bought through third parties like Amazon or at your local grocery store. You can get 50 capsules for about $45 CAD on Amazon or you can used the preferred method of the Nespresso website. The prices are a bit better on here though I have not yet tested the service. The nice thing about using the Nespresso website is that there are some brews you can only get there. To my surprise they now have brews for brewing over ice which actually excites me quite a bit. I love iced coffee. They also have special cups made for brewing with Nespresso and other accessories.
I wish one thing you could get was a larger reservoir for my Inissia. It seems there is only enough water in the reservoir for about 4 to 5 cups. Not enough for me but perhaps for those that don’t drink as much espresso.
Overall I have been very impressed with the Nespresso Inissia and the Nespresso system in general. It’s not for large cups of coffee but they never claim that the Inissia or any of their machines are for that. Can I recommend the Inissia? Absolutely. Especially if you can pick one up on sale. I do believe it’s worth the price of entry as well even at full price. If you are looking instead for a straight on full cup coffee maker I would recommend a Keurig or Tassimo as they are designed to make a full cup of coffee.